Security Features Overview

  • New banknotes
  • Current banknotes
  • Current banknotes

Video Transcript

Australian banknotes are among the safest in the world.

And to keep them that way the Reserve Bank is introducing a new series of banknotes.

Now in circulation is the new five-dollar banknote.

You'll see many innovative security features including a distinctive top-to-bottom window.

Tilt the banknote and you'll see an Eastern Spinebill move its wings.

Inside the Federation Pavilion at the bottom of the window is a number 5 that changes direction.

Turn the banknote over and in the top corner you'll see a prominent patch that changes colour in a rolling effect.

And there's a tactile feature to assist the vision-impaired community. Importantly, all existing banknotes can continue to be used.

The Reserve Bank is making our banknotes 'Clearly More Secure'.

See more at banknotes.rba.gov.au

Video Transcript

The Reserve Bank is working to keep Australian banknotes among the safest in the world.

Following the $5 banknote, now there’s a new $10 banknote.

You’ll see many innovative security features including a distinctive top-to-bottom window.

Tilt the banknote and you’ll see a Cockatoo move its wings.

Inside the homestead at the bottom of the window is a number 10 that changes direction.

Turn the banknote over and in the top corner you’ll see a prominent patch that changes colour in a rolling effect.

And there’s a tactile feature to assist the vision-impaired community.

Importantly, all existing banknotes can continue to be used.

The Reserve Bank is making our banknotes ‘Clearly More Secure’.

See more at banknotes.rba.gov.au.

Video Transcript

For a long time now Australia has had one of the lowest counterfeiting rates in the world.
One of the reasons for this is the different security features that we have on our banknotes, which make it harder for a counterfeiter to copy them.

But even the best security feature won't work if it isn't checked.
Here's one easy and effective test you can do.
Most counterfeits in Australia are printed on paper, not plastic.
This means they will tear easily compared to our genuine banknotes.
Also, our genuine banknotes don't crumple the same way paper counterfeits will.
But there are other important checks you can do too.

Another really easy test is to look at the clear windows in our banknotes.
First, make sure that the window doesn't look like it's been stuck on, or joined on.
In a genuine banknote the window is continuous with the rest of the note.
Second, look to see if the window is a bit cloudy.
On a genuine banknote the window should be clear.

On all of our banknotes there is also a white image incorporated into the clear window.
On the genuine $50 banknote the image is the Southern Cross.
The stars of the Southern Cross will always be clearly printed, with four seven-pointed stars and a single, smaller five-pointed star.
Make sure that you can't easily rub the white image off.

Here's another interesting feature.
Diamond-shaped patterns printed on each side of the banknote, should combine perfectly to form a seven-pointed star, inside a circle.
You can see this when you hold the banknote up to the light.
And, while you're there, you can also see the shadow image of the Australian Coat of Arms.

Australia's banknotes also include raised printing, called intaglio print
Rub your finger over the portrait and over the numeral and you'll feel the texture.
Our banknotes also contain micro-printing, which is very small text that most of us need a magnifying glass to read.
And you can see that the serial numbers on our banknotes glow under ultraviolet light.

Some banknotes don't have the name printed under the portrait but this doesn't mean that they're counterfeit.
The names were added to Australian banknotes from 2002 to help the public identify the people on them.
So you'll see genuine banknotes in circulation with names printed under the portrait, and some without.

Another feature of our banknotes is that you can tell which year they were printed.
The first two numerals of the serial number, for example 99, means the banknote was printed in 1999… 03 means the banknote was printed in 2003.

So with this information you should be able to quickly and easily tell the difference between a real banknote and a counterfeit.
But if you do have a counterfeit, here's what to do.
First, handle the suspect counterfeit as little as possible and store it in an envelope – because it may be needed by the police for evidence.
Also record as much relevant information as you can, such as how it came into your possession.

You should also report the matter directly to the police!
But under no circumstances should you do anything that may jeopardise your safety or the safety of others.

So there it is! Now you know how to check whether you have a counterfeit, and what you should do if you think you have one.

If you want more information about Australia's banknotes, visit the Reserve Bank's website or give us a call.

Australia has one of the lowest rates of counterfeiting in the world. Most people will never see a counterfeit. Even so, it is vitally important that people are aware of the security features included on Australia's banknotes. To determine if a suspect banknote is a counterfeit, it is best to compare it with a banknote that is known to be genuine.

These videos demonstrate how to use the security features to identify genuine Australian banknotes.

Download a Security Feature Flyer for the new $5 banknote: PDF 3.1MB and new $10 banknote PDF 2MB

View Counterfeit Detection Guide: HTML or Download PDF 754KB